Sutherland to step down as Cricket Australia CEO

Cricket Australia (CA) CEO James Sutherland has announced that he will be stepping down from his post as the ball-tampering scandal seems to have claimed another victim.

Sutherland has spent two decades with CA, 17 years as CEO, with the board saying that he will stay on and serve his 12-month notice until a suitable replacement is found.

Sutherland, who began work at Cricket Australia in 1998, has been CEO of the board since 2001 and made the announcement at a press conference on Wednesday alongside CA chairman Dave Peever.

A former first-class cricketer with Victoria, Sutherland oversaw a period of great growth within CA including the formation of the Big Bash League in 2011, the start of day-night Test cricket in 2015 and major broadcast deal being signed this year.

However, Sutherland’s tenure also underwent a state of turmoil recently as the ball-tampering scandal on their tour to South Africa in March rocked the sport.

The scandal lead the national team’s captain, vice-captain and coach losing their jobs and it seems Sutherland is following suit, although he denied the events at Newlands had anything to do with Wednesday’s announcement.

Sutherland’s statement read: “I’m announcing my intention to stand down as chief executive of Cricket Australia. In advising David [Peever] and the board of my decision I’ve provided 12 months’ notice.

“It’s my intention to give the board the opportunity to run a thorough process to identify my successor and for me to provide support to the new CEO with the smoothest possible handover.

“After nearly 20 years at CA and 17 as chief executive, the time is right for me and my family and I think the time is also right for cricket.

“My overwhelming feeling today is a sense of gratitude. I feel fortunate to have been given the opportunity to do this job and I’ve worked closely with six chairmen.

“I’d like to thank David and each of his five predecessors for having the confidence in me and for their friendship, support and counsel along the way.

“By far the most inspiring thing about the job that I do is the people that I work with. I love and admire their passion for the game and their dedication to serve the cricket community.

“In addition to those at CA that includes people in our states and territories and of course the thousands of volunteers across Australia who do a wonderful job for cricket. Any credit to me has only ever been due to the great people around me.

“Finally, thanks to my family. None of our three kids were born when I started work at CA, so in a sense that’s all they know. But it’s my wife Heidi who is the one who really deserves the credit.

“She’s made her own personal sacrifices for my career and our own family and I can’t thank her enough for her support and understanding.”